BATON ROUGE, LA. — Ohio State survived an early season test from LSU by using a little trickery of its own. Or so it seemed.
Tayler Hill scored 15 points, including a basket that broke a tie in the final minute, and the No. 7 Buckeyes used what appeared to be a fake timeout to steal a three-point play in a 59-55 win over LSU on Wednesday night.
“We did the stuff you have to do at the end of games,” Ohio State coach Jim Foster said. “You have to make shots and make plays. Then, you have to limit the other team and get rebounds. We did that pretty well tonight.”
With the score tied at 53, Hill made a short shot to give the Buckeyes the lead with 37 seconds remaining.
On the Lady Tigers’ next possession, LaSondra Barrett missed the front end of a one-and-one and Ohio State came away with rebound.
Two free throws by both Brittany Johnson and Hill in the last 25 seconds clinched the victory for the Buckeyes (3-0). Taylor Turnbow made a layup at the buzzer for LSU (0-2).
Jantel Lavender scored 17 points to lead Ohio State.
Adrienne Webb scored 16 points and Latear Eason added 12 for LSU.
The Lady Tigers, who trailed for nearly the entire game, tied the score at 50 on a basket by Webb with 2:24 left. Webb scored five straight points after Ohio State went ahead 50-45.
The Buckeyes took a three-point lead on an unconventional three-point play. When it appeared to LSU that Ohio State was going to call a timeout, the LSU players began to go to their bench, but the ball was still live and Alison Jackson made an uncontested layup.
Moreover, Barrett came on to the court as a substitute. The Lady Tigers were whistled for a technical foul for having six players on the floor. Hill made one of two foul shots.
“There is no excuse for what we did,” LSU coach Van Chancellor said. “It looked like [Foster] was telling his players to come over and he was going to call a timeout. But, there was no whistle. We rushed the floor and left a player wide open. We get a technical. That made it a mountain for us to overcome.”
After the Buckeyes took the three-point lead on the unusual three-point play, LSU failed to score on two straight possessions. But, Webb knocked down a 3-pointer to tie the score at 53 with 51 seconds remaining.
“I thought our team fought awfully hard tonight,” Chancellor said. “We did a great job to stay in there with a very good team. I’m disappointed because you don’t have many opportunities to beat the seventh-ranked team. We had them on the ropes.”
Ohio State was still missing point guard Samantha Prahalis, who was suspended three games for a secondary NCAA violation. She has now completed her penalty and will be back for the Buckeyes game against East Tennessee State on Monday.
Ohio State Postgame Notes